Houston Dash midfielder Morgan Brian has been officially ruled out of the April friendlies against Russia that the United States Women's National Team are scheduled to play, according to a story posted by The Equalizer. The news was first reported by Corey Roepkin of the Houston Chronicle late Monday night and it has been since confirmed by The Equalizer.
Injuries continue to plague Brian
Over the last year or so, Brian has had recurring knee injuries which have affected her overall play and the minutes she has seen on the field for both club and country. The most recent injury came during the game against France in the 2017 SheBelieves Cup, where she picked up a strain on her MCL, and the midfielder has not been able to recover fully from it. Brian has been involved with some light training for the Dash last week but has not been cleared to join in full training as of yet.
Due to the nature of her injuries, both the player and the national team have decided that she should miss out on this particular camp so she can regain full fitness and avoid any further issues from the injury. Also, when considering the importance of Brian to the national team set up, both parties seem to feel it best for her to take the necessary amount of time for rehabilitation.
No replacement is planned for Brian
As of right now, head coach Jill Ellis has decided not to call up a replacement player for Morgan Brian and seems content to work with the rest of the center midfield players she has called up. That list includes Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC), Rose Lavelle (Boston Breakers), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash/Manchester City), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC) and Samantha Mewis (North Carolina Courage).
The full list of players called into camp is now:
Goalkeepers: Jane Campbell (Houston Dash), Ashlyn Harris (Orlando Pride), Alyssa Naeher (Chicago Red Stars).
Defenders: Meghan Klingenberg (Portland Thorns FC), Ali Krieger (Orlando Pride), Kelley O’Hara (Sky Blue FC), Megan Oyster (Boston Breakers), Becky Sauerbrunn (FC Kansas City), Casey Short (Chicago Red Stars).
Midfielders: Tobin Heath (Portland Thorns FC), Lindsey Horan (Portland Thorns FC), Rose Lavelle (Boston Breakers), Carli Lloyd (Houston Dash/Manchester City), Allie Long (Portland Thorns FC), Samantha Mewis (North Carolina Courage), Megan Rapinoe (Seattle Reign FC).
Forwards: Crystal Dunn (Chelsea FC), Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride/Olympique Lyonnais), Kealia Ohai (Houston Dash), Christen Press (Chicago Red Stars), Mallory Pugh (UCLA), Amy Rodriguez (FC Kansas City), Lynn Williams (NC Courage).